This is the first time I invited someone to write a guest post for my blog. Theda K. Rogers is a professional writer. I encourage you to read and bookmark her post. It’s an excellent tutorial on how to get new clients using e-mail.

How to get new clients using emailAs a work-at-home-mom, I’ve found it particularly challenging to market my freelance writing business. Cold calling is a tried and true method for getting new clients, but when you have a toddler at home, talking on the phone (and sounding professional) isn’t the easiest thing in the world.

So I’ve had to be a little creative when it came to marketing my Internet business.

Since I have a website and a blog, I thought it only natural that I use the Internet to also find new clients. Instead of cold calling, I started cold emailing.

My philosophy is that people are busy, so a quick, to-the-point email saves them time. More important, it gives me a more professional way of making contact for a relatively low amount of money. Direct mail would work in a similar manner, but it definitely costs more. Also, I can cold email anytime of the day or night.

Here’s how to get new clients using my cold emailing technique. First, I identify my target market. Then I begin looking at local and nearby chamber of commerce sites to find the web addresses of potential customers. Even if an email address is listed on the chamber of commerce site, I always go to the company’s website. This way I can find out the name of the appropriate contact person, and I can find out a bit about the business.

When I’ve located an email address, I then begin my cold email text.

The most important thing is to have a contact name so you can personalize the email properly. I never say “Dear Sir or Madam,” or “To Whom It May Concern.” If I can’t find a contact person, I generally don’t send a cold email. When I get a free moment I simply call that company and ask for the name of the person in charge of marketing.

The next most important part of a cold email message is the subject line. So that I’m not violating the CAN-SPAM Act, I make sure that my subject line isn’t deceptive. Since I’m looking for information about their need for copywriting, and since I’m offering that service, my subject line usually reads, “Copywriting services information request”.

Okay, let’s get to the meat of the message.

My email truly is a request for information, so I make sure to keep true to my subject line. I tell the contact person why I’m writing, who I am, and what I offer. I also ask if they use my type of service, and request information about how I can be informed when they have such a need. The beauty of the cold email is that I can include a link to my portfolio, so there’s no need for the prospect to ask me for samples.

Here’s an example:

Dear Mr. Smith,

I am a professional business writer, and I’m contacting real estate companies to determine whether you have an occasional or ongoing need for a great freelance writer.

I help companies write web and blog content, press releases, newsletters, and other marketing collateral. You can find samples of my work in the portfolio on my website.

How can I be informed about freelance writing opportunities with [company name]?


[my name, company name, phone number, web address, blog address]

If their website is particularly interesting, I also try to mention how I like it, or how I noticed their Internet business doesn’t have a blog, or something else to make it more personal.

Now, before you start sending mass cold emails, be sure that you’ve read the Federal Trade Commission’s CAN SPAM Act, so you understand the rules and the risks.

I don’t include an opt-out message, though the Act requires it, because I never email them again if I’ve received no response. I’m not sending an e-newsletter or anything else on a continual basis. I’m simply looking for information.

Also, I don’t include a physical street address because I work from home. When I get a post office box I’m sure I’ll include that, but I don’t think it’s necessary, despite the rules. That’s a risk I’m willing to take, and so far I’ve received no complaints.

How has cold emailing worked for my Internet business? Most of the well-paying clients I’ve had have been a direct result of cold emailing. I usually caught them at a time when they needed my services, and my email was well-received. I’ve also gotten a lot of, “Not right now, but I’ll keep your information on file,” and “Not now, but contact us later” replies. I add those to my “warm leads” list, and I will later use those email addresses or physical addresses for future campaigns.

Cold emailing has definitely worked for me. Have you tried it, or do you prefer cold calling? How do you get new clients? What other methods have you used to market your Internet business when you just started out, or when you have a busy lifestyle?

About the Author

Theda has been a professional business copywriter and editor since 2002. Her company, Theda K. Communications, has helped businesses create website and blog content, brochures, newsletters, press releases, articles, sales letters, internal communications, and other information vehicles. Her services also include proofreading and editing services. Theda’s website is, and her personal blog is at

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32 Responses to How To Get New Clients Using E-mail

  1. Great post with hands-on tips. Thanks.
    However, dependent on the industry and your services one has to be careful with positioning. You don’t want to come across ‘cheap’. Great to hear that it works for you.

  2. […] Thanks to my Entrecard travels, I met a great blogger who asked me to be to his first guest blogger. I was honored, and the article I wrote is up and running. Of course, the guest post I wrote is about getting new clients using cold email. […]

  3. […] problems with working at home is the distractions of small children when trying to use the phone. This is an idea I’ve been hesitant to try because I hadn’t heard of anyone else doing […]

  4. Ling says:

    Useful article, Theda. I’d also add that you should not mention the ‘work-at-home mom’ part, at least in the first email. Also, don’t use words like ‘I think’ or ‘I guess’, which leave an impression that you may or may not be able to do it. Just say that you can do it. Period.

  5. Excellent post!
    I’ve bookmarked it for future reference, I simply don’t have time to begin an email list though it is on my to-do list. It’s nice to see that you included c-span concerns into the article instead of focusing on simply how to get more from the recipients.

    Keep up the great writings!

  6. kumo says:

    Great post. A simple and clear method, it should work fine. That’s the way that I like.

  7. Thanks for the great response, everyone.

    John: I agree you have to be careful not to come across ‘cheap.’ When or if I talk to the prospect, they quickly find out that my rates are reasonable, but not low. I think that’s what you mean, right?

    Ling: I definitely don’t mention my work-at-home status when I cold email. And if the client doesn’t bring it up (they can find out about me from my blog), then I don’t see a reason to bring it up. As far as the cold emails, I just use the script above, with very few variations.

    Popular Wealth: Thanks for the compliments! You don’t really have to build an email list, though. I just send a few, maybe 5 or 10, and sometimes just 1 or 2, whenever I have a free moment to find a few email addresses. Since each email is personalized, I find it easier to do one by one. Don’t let not having a whole bunch of emails at-the-ready stop you from starting to market, if that’s what you want to do. You might happen to reach someone who needs you today, not when you have time to compile a list. Go for it!

    Kumo: Thanks for commenting. Simple and clear is definitely a must for my situation. Just answering these few comments took me a while with my daughter interrupting every minute or two. LOL!

  8. Theda, what a helpful article. I appreciate the clear and practical approach. I haven’t tried this method yet but I can see the value.

  9. Julio says:

    I am an Interior Designer, how can I get more clients?

    Thank you,


  10. Aamir says:

    Its been very useful tips what i have read in the Guide above about getting potential clients and cold emailing i will use this tips what i have got today.



  11. Cathy says:

    Hi Theda,

    Great post! I’m starting my own copywriting business now and have been looking for ways to get clients without spending a lot of money or cold-calling. I have toddlers too so finding quiet time to call during business hours would be impossible. This is very helpful, thanks for sharing. All the best with your business!

  12. Katina says:

    Hello Theda!

    I have been looking for something like this for a while. I work in financial planning from home. I need new clients all the time and can’t really call a lot of people because I have a really busy 11 month-old at home. This will work!


  13. Renee says:

    This post was very helpful. I have been in the web/graphic design industry for nearly 5 years and recently decided to branch out on my own. Word of Mouth has been great, but I needed a new way to market. This template has helped me “cold email” without being too wordy.

    Thank You!

  14. Craig says:

    Hi Theda

    Great article – very helpful ! I have been in business in the UK for 5 years & have struggled to find the right words for my email campaigns. I work from home & face the same problems with little ones running around !! Thank you for making it clear – I will be using your template tomorrow !!

    • Edward Jones says:

      Although of course cold-emaling in EU countries is totally illegal – the law is different to that of the USA.

  15. Rangga says:

    Great post! I’m starting my own copywriting business now and have been looking for ways to get clients without spending a lot of money or cold-calling. I have toddlers too so finding quiet time to call during business hours would be impossible. This is very helpful, thanks for sharing. All the best with your business!

  16. Amar says:

    Great article. Going to use your template this weekend!!

  17. jaliyah garcia says:

    I am a writer too but I’m having no luck finding enough clients to keep me busy and earn well. Thanks for the advise I’m sure this will greatly help me in my job. Thanks.

  18. aShocka says:

    very nice, thank you for writing this!

  19. Eleonor Hewitt says:

    Hello Theda,

    I never heard of cold emailing, but I’m glad you posted this article! I used to make cold calls and I guess its not that really effective. In some areas, especially in the US, cold callers or telemarketers are not allowed to call to promote company services or sell certain products. Great strategy in cold emailing. Thanks Theda!



  20. Roy says:

    That is very helpful and practical. Most people are wary of sending out too many emails in case they are considered spam so this simple practical guide is most helpful.

  21. Shawn says:

    I admire your boldness in cold-emailing your clients. I think this really shows your passion and dedication to your job.

  22. Perry Rose says:

    For me, I’d rather call them on the phone.

    That way I know I got through to the potential client.

    E-mailing is kinda ify: Will it go in their spam box? Did they delete it without really reading it thoroughly? Did the yeven open the e-mail TO read it???

    Nearly every time I will get their voice mail, which is great, because they can always go back to it later on, sort of like e-mail. 

    It’s been said that one should not leave messages. That’s BS.

    Calling or e-mailing – it’s basically the same when leaving them info. about yourself.

  23. Tobbymac888 says:

    thanks  for sharing

  24. Lakeesha221 says:

    Great Post!  I am going to try this for my business.

  25. Charlene says:

    Hi Theda

    I enjoyed your cold calling ,please help us to get more clients as we are an insurance company.

  26. Well written helpful article. Very relevant to this day. Thank you.

  27. Zac says:

    Very well put!

  28. Theda K. Rogers says:

    Thanks so much, guys! I’m so happy that people still find this article interesting and relevant 6 years later!

  29. Keri C. says:

    Thanks for the great article. I once had someone cold call me when suddenly her toddler started crying in the background and honestly- it warmed my heart much more to her pitch. It wasn’t her finest moment I’m sure, but it certainly humanized her- it’s nice to know you’re dealing with a real person who’s clearly working hard and multitasking!

    Keri Cornachio | AKNY HOME Custom Mirrors

  30. Michael says:

    Do you use your business email address or a personal looking email account. (ie: OR do you use

    I wonder if they see a business email address they may delete as opposed to a personal or customer looking email address.


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